A Day without a Mexican
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Point 1. Mexican community boosts American economy considerably as without them not only service sector would be paralyzed but also schools, high-finance, medical, legal and entertainment fields would come to a stand-still.
Point 2. Americans, particularly Californians, are preconceived about Mexicans as many of them stereotypically assume that all Hispanics in the USA are Mexican illegal immigrants who do not know English language and are ready to perform any manual labour at minimum charge.
Point 3. Americans underestimate Mexican community and its contribution to American economy and culture.
Point 1. I agree with the statement that immigrants, particularly Mexicans, who represent the most numerous group of immigrants in the USA, are the core of the economy. Firstly, they are eager to do the work that Americans are unwilling to do: agricultural, janitorial and kitchen work, which are minimum wage jobs. The director accentuated it in the video showing people’s responses to sudden vanishing of Mexican immigrants. The city attorney wondered how he could run a business and demanded to send him some Chinese or Japanese instead, which implies the dependence on common laborers, who are mostly immigrants. The same point came from the delivery man when he noticed that only Mexicans know how to fix Japanese cars. Besides, Mexican immigrants are not only janitors, servers and manual workers but also lawyers, doctors and executives who create businesses and workplaces for Americans.
Point 2. I partly agree with the statement that Americans are preconceived about Mexican immigrants. Despite of the fact that America accepts more and more Mexican immigrants as permanent residents nowadays the number of illegal immigrants who sustain stereotypes is considerably larger. However, the ignorance of Americans regarding Mexican identity is demonstrated in the video by preconceptions which are widespread in real life. The first one was expressed by the girl who said that Mexicans cannot speak the English language and that their disappearance didn`t make any difference as communication with them was impossible. The second one was illustrated by the comments of a daytime actress who was convinced that her friend could not be Mexican because “…she is just like me. Besides, she is a doctor!”. This stereotype is numerously repeated in the video by demonstrating that there was no one to harvest fruits and vegetables, repair cars, clean shirts. Nevertheless, despite the fact that there is a reason for every preconception, generalizations put in jeopardy the reputation of the whole Mexican community. In many cases, this is unjustifiable.
Point 3. I agree with the statement that Americans underestimate the contribution of Mexican community. There are several reasons for that. The first reason is that common stereotypes about Mexican illegal immigrants obscure all the benefits Mexicans bring to American citizens. Abdul Hassan, UCLA Professor, illustrated this in the video by comparing costs government spends on immigrants with the amount of money Mexicans contribute. The cash flow brought up by Mexican immigrants is in large excess over expenses on immigrants, and it still escapes notice. The second reason is people simply never know what they have gotten until it is gone. Vast amount of monotonous handwork is done by Mexicans and it goes unnoticed by Americans because it was always done by somebody else. There is a bright demonstration of this in the video when the school teacher says that her husband needed a shirt, and there were no clean ones. Then she tried to iron a shirt, but she didn`t know how to do this and found it quite upsetting. However, the ultimate indifference is expressed by ignoring the very existence of the phenomenon. In this particular case, the existence of Mexican community in the USA is often being neglected. One interviewee in the video reasoned her apathy by saying: “As far as I am concerned, I live in America, and I am only interested in America”. This argument is inappropriate as American society is heterogeneous, and American way of life depends on each social category and national community.
First of all, “A day without a Mexican” relates to sociology as it covers several problems topical for the field: illegal immigration, its benefits and drawbacks for the country, exploitation of labor, and reactions of people to social changes. Secondly, it simulates conceptually new situation in the society which is irreproducible in real life. The opposite points of view on these controversial questions are represented in a humorous way which provokes thoughts about the functioning of the society and human relations. In the end, migration is a complex social phenomenon, which concerns numerous aspects of society’s life. With the acceleration of globalization the size of migration flows increases. That is why the information in the video is relevant.
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